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A mom’s $6,000 phone bill in three months: The push to rein in Ontario’s costly prison phone system

Last summer, a 65-year-old at a Montreal seniors’ home racked up a phone bill of $6,072.12 in just three months. Administrators at the complex were so alarmed they warned her she was being defrauded.

When she reviewed the bill, however, she realized the charges originated from the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre, a provincial prison where her son was being held on domestic-abuse allegations. His criminal charges were eventually dropped, but the phone charges remained.


“I find that aspect repulsive,” said lawyer Michael Spratt, who filed an access-to-information request for the contract to examine why his firm was spending thousands of dollars a month to receive collect calls from prisoners who were simply exercising their constitutional right to contact counsel. “Gone are the days when we should be profiting off an incarcerated population.”


Read Patrick White’s full article: The Globe and Mail

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